Hillsborough Castle and Gardens

Discover Northern Ireland's royal residence

Discover Northern Ireland's royal residence

Spend a day exploring 100 acres of stunning gardens. Book a tour of the Georgian house built by Wills Hill, which is still in use as a Royal residence in Northern Ireland.

A great family day out

Keep the family entertained with a day out at Hillsborough Castle and Gardens. Book online to save (members go free).

From November - December there will be a series of festive events and activities, including live music, food, family workshops, choral concerts and Christmas ghost stories this November and December at Hillsborough Castle and Gardens.

Meet the Victorian household of Lord & Lady Arthur Hill, the Tower of London's famous Yeoman Warders, Lucy Worsley and, of course, Father Christmas as you explore Northern Ireland's royal residence.

Enjoy festive family fun

Join us for wreath making workshops, live Christmas-themed jazz music and magical guided tours at the castle this December.

Throne Room with silk green damask walls, wooden floor and large rug. Two red and gold Chairs of State, or 'thrones' are situated at the far end of the room. Gold-framed paintings of landscapes adorn the walls and three large chandeliers hang above.
Things to see

Explore the ceremonial heart of the castle, where Her Majesty The Queen received guests at a coronation ball in 1953.

Open daily for castle tours

Hillsborough Castle

Included in combined castle tour and gardens tickets (members go free)

A lady stands in a Georgian room, looking around her at the gold-framed paintings adorning the Red Room. The walls are covered in deep red silk damask and a marble fireplace is visible. An older couple can be seen in the background, also looking at the paintings.
Things to see

Political history meets royal life and a spectacular collection of art, deep in the heart of Hillsborough Castle.

Open daily for castle tours

Hillsborough Castle

Included in combined castle tour and gardens tickets (members go free)

The Walled Garden at Hillsborough Castle and Gardens, showing the pergola in the distance surrounded by planting and bedding. An archway surrounds the frame of the image and there is a blue cloudy sky
Things to see

Enter the castle grounds through this 18th-century walled garden, which has been expertly restored using traditional methods.

Open daily

Hillsborough Castle

Included in all admission tickets (members go free)

Primary school students take part in school session at Kensington Palace
Families Christmas

Join us this Christmas at Hillsborough Castle and Gardens for festive family fun with storytelling, arts and crafts, dancing and drumming.

Selected dates in December 2019 and January 2020

Hillsborough Castle

Drop-in throughout the day

Included in gardens admission (members go free)

Victorian-style wreath hanging on a tree in the gardens at Hillsborough Castle
Events Christmas

Create a seasonal Victorian wreath using foliage from the castle grounds with resident florist, Lorna Brownlee.

Friday 13 December, Saturday 14 December

Hillsborough Castle

11:00-13:00, 14:30-16:30

Separate ticket (advance booking required)

Image of jazz percussionist David Lyttle sat on a car bonnet
Events Highlights

Join jazz percussionist David Lyttle and his band as they perform a new suite of music at Hillsborough Castle.

14 December 2019

Hillsborough Castle

19:00 drinks reception, 19:30 start

Separate ticket (advance booking required)

A view from above looking straight down Yew Tree Walk with Lady Alice's Temple at the far end. Clouds in the sky and bare trees suggest it was taken in late Autumn/early winter.

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A family of two adults and two children enjoy playing and walking on the South Lawn of Hillsborough Castle and Gardens in autumn 2019.

Members go free

Escape to the past whenever you want when you join us today.

Enjoy unlimited adventures at our palaces, a 10% discount in our shops and cafés, and exclusive events when you become a member of Historic Royal Palaces.

Support us

We are a charity and there are several ways you can support us.

The new blue and black Heritage Lottery Fund logo for 2019, displayed on a white background

Our supporters

The restoration and re-presentation of Hillsborough Castle and Gardens was made possible by the National Lottery Heritage Fund,
Mark Pigott KBE KSTJ, Garfield Weston Foundation, the Clore Duffield Foundation, the Foyle Foundation, the Wolfson Foundation and other generous donors.

A group of visitors enjoying a viewing of the Red Room, one of Hillsborough Castle's State Rooms. Two young girls appear in the foreground along with a young couple. A small group of older ladies and gentlemen can be seen in the background having just entered the room. The walls are lined with a deep red silk damask and a variety of oil paintings in gold frames of various sizes fill the walls. A chandelier hangs above a small round wooden table in the centre of the room. The walls are lined with grey and gold detailing.

Volunteer with us

Volunteers support the palaces in many different ways. See what roles we have available and register your interest.

Hillsborough Castle Gardens, looking east across the pond towards Yew Tree Walk.

Make a donation

Help us to conserve these historic buildings, ensuring they are here for future generations to enjoy. We raise all our own funds and depend on your support.

The Palace Crest Collection has been exclusively designed for Historic Royal Palaces and celebrates the creation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain.

Browse gifts for Christmas

Discover beautiful and exclusive gifts for all tastes this Christmas with our Hillsborough Castle and Gardens gift shop collection. Worldwide shipping available.